Amazon gated categories are restricted categories of products that require sellers to be approved to join. The reason Amazon gates some categories is to ensure that customers shop with confidence without having to worry about counterfeits, illegal, or dangerous products. For some products and categories, Amazon asks sellers to pay additional fees, conduct performance checks, and produce specific qualifications before approval.
If you’re interested in selling in an Amazon gated category, read on! We’ll share with you how to request approval and get it quickly.
How to Request Amazon Gated Category Approval
The process of requesting approval to sell in Amazon’s restricted categories is a simple and straightforward one. Some sellers get automatic approval for certain products and categories. Unfortunately nobody (except Amazon) knows the categories or products that receive automatic approval upon request. Nevertheless, sellers with old accounts and impressive metrics are more likely to be approved automatically.
All Amazon sellers follow the same procedure in making a request, regardless of their level or metrics.
- Log into your account and from the inventory menu click Add a Product.
- Search for the product or category you would like to add.
- Select the Listing limitation apply link located next to the item in the search results.
- To start the application process, click on the request approval button.
To follow-up on the status of your application, go back to the Add a Product tool on the inventory menu. Select the To Manage Your Selling Applications, Click Here link appearing below the search box.
Follow all the steps in the link and provide all the material Amazon needs to review your request. If you get a message that says “You’ve been automatically approved”, then congrats!
What if you don’t get approved? Don’t lose hope, you can always apply again in the future. To make sure you get it right, we’ll share with you the most important milestones you need to accomplish before reapplying.
1. Make Sure You Have an Impressive Seller Reputation Before Applying
Most applications from new sellers are rejected because of credibility; new sellers lack a history. In some restricted categories, sellers are required to have their own e-commerce sites that Amazon reviews before approval. Building trust on Amazon takes time that’s why new sellers are advised to start with unrestricted or ungated categories before working their way up.
2. Apply to Sell Products That Are Already Listed
If you’re not selling a personal brand, then it’s advisable that you request for approval to sell products already listed on Amazon in the category of your choice. The reason you’re likely to get approval for listed brands is that Amazon doesn’t trust unknown private brands. You can start by looking for specific products to request approval from Seller Central.
Make sure you make the request after analyzing the product to see whether you’ll make a profit selling it.
Remember, when you apply for approval to sell a listed brand, you’ll need to have a paper invoice from the supplier confirming you have made a purchase. You can take the picture of the invoice with a smartphone and then submit to Amazon.
3. Watch Out for Quantities
Go through the application terms to make sure you meet the minimum quantity for every purchase you make. All your invoices should meet or exceed the minimum requirements. If not you risk losing the ability to sell these products anymore.
4. Select the Suppliers You Work with Carefully
Most sellers prefer to get their products from manufacturers or suppliers that are affordable. However, Amazon is less likely to accept invoices from manufacturers located overseas for products that fall under the gated categories. If you want to increase the chances of approval to sell in the gated categories, buy the products you intend to sell from local suppliers. An even better option is to buy directly from local manufacturers because it signals Amazon that your stock won’t run out once approved.
5. Don’t Hire Someone To Apply on Your Behalf
Some sellers are tempted to hire someone to help them with the application process because they don’t want to deal with the technicalities involved. The best thing to do is to apply yourself because a third-party can never present your interests the way you do. Moreover, if the application is rejected, you’re the one that suffers the loss.
The products that Amazon restricts can be placed under three classifications, which include:
- collector items with specific requirements
- high-quality industrial & scientific products
- products that the state or federal government regulates
Again, the main reason Amazon restricts selling in specific categories is to ensure that customers get exactly what they pay for. Customer experience is a main priority for Amazon, and one of the reasons for their enormous success. For example, if someone buys a piece of sports memorabilia, Amazon wants to make sure it’s not counterfeit, so you aren’t disappointed when you receive it.
The products that require approval before selling on Amazon fall under the following categories:
- Automotive & Powersports
- Collectible Books
- Collectible Coins
- Entertainment Collectibles
- Fine Art
- Gift Cards
- Major Appliances
- Music & DVD
- Sports Collectibles
- Streaming Media Players
- Video, DVD, & Blu-ray
Now that we’ve told you about the restricted / gated categories on Amazon, and how to get approval, let’s talk about selling on these categories once you’re approved. From sellers’ experience and Amazon’s statistics, it’s easier to sell on some restricted categories compared to others. One of the most lucrative restricted categories is automotive and powersports.
Another lucrative gated category is collectible books, which accounted for a big portion of Amazon’s library even in 2018. Collectible books are cover signed, which differentiates them from second-hand books.
The last most lucrative gated category on Amazon is collectible coins. According to Amazon, collectible coins sold on the site must be backed by a recognized government-owned mint.
Hopefully now you understand what gated categories on Amazon are, and how you can get approval to sell in these categories. Feel free to leave your comments below if you have experience with this process and want to share it with others!